DAW logoThe UK Council on Deafness, founded in 1993 and the national umbrella organisation for charities and professional bodies working in the field of deafness, co-ordinates deaf awareness week which involves UK wide series of national and local events to raise awareness of the needs of the 1 in 6 deaf or hard of hearing people in the UK.

Deaf Awareness Week aims to promote the positive aspects of deafness, promote social inclusion and raise awareness of the huge range of local organisations that support deaf people and their family and friends.

The theme of this year’s Deaf Awareness Week is ‘acquired deafness’. Acquired deafness is the loss of hearing that occurs or develops some time during a person's life but was not present at birth.

Acquired causes may lead to hearing loss at any age, such as:

  • infectious diseases including meningitis, measles and mumps
  • chronic ear infections
  • collection of fluid in the ear (otitis media)
  • use of certain medicines, such as those used in the treatment of neonatal infections, malaria, drug-resistant tuberculosis, and cancers
  • injury to the head or ear
  • excessive noise, including occupational noise such as that from machinery and explosions
  • recreational exposure to loud sounds such as that from use of personal audio devices at high volumes and for prolonged periods of time and regular attendance at concerts, nightclubs, bars and sporting events
  • ageing, in particular due to degeneration of sensory cells
  • wax or foreign bodies blocking the ear canal

There are 11 million people with hearing loss across the UK and 50,000 children. Here are some tips on how to communicate when you meet a deaf person.


DAW poster 2020